New operating system = no access to PDFs

Report ID: 577264170

Hello, I'm trying to get to my PDFs online since the connector doesn't work (I can see the material but when I click on the PDF I get an error message). Can you please advise?
  • edited November 12, 2019
    I'm not really following this. Accessing your PDFs doesn't have anything to do with the Zotero Connector. How do you see these things as connected? What do you mean by "get to my PDFs online"?

    If you've synced and you get a file-not-found message when you try to open attachments in the Zotero app, see Files Not Syncing.

    Otherwise, can you explain what exactly you're trying to do?

    https://www.zotero.org/support/reporting_problems#provide_steps_to_reproduce
  • Report ID: 2140287610

    I am almost constantly receiving the following error code when I click to open an article/book/chapter/etc. (The error code changes with each paper):

    The attached file could not be found at the following path:
    /Users/stephanieglick/Zotero/storage/ZXBE8EWC/Max-Neef_2005_Foundations of transdisciplinarity__MARKED.pdf
    It may have been moved or deleted outside of Zotero, or, if the file was added on another computer, it may not yet have been synced to zotero.org.


    Steps to reproduce:
    1) Locate an item through the search bar such as: Marker
    2) Click appropriate item that comes up such as: Marker - 2004 - Theories and Disciplines as Sites of Struggle The.pdf
    3) click "locate" and am taken to a slew (hundreds or more) of folders that are empty
    4) alternatively, click "more information" and get directed to: "Why am I getting the message 'Attached file could not be found. It may have been moved or deleted.' when I try to open a file on a synced computer?" located at: https://www.zotero.org/support/kb/files_not_syncing


    Other information:
    My storage is almost full (297.6 MB). I had deleted some items but still no access (Zotero was not updating to show any changes in storage level). Since then, I added one more item and most papers are now inaccessible. I have already chosen the "more information" button which led me to this: https://www.zotero.org/support/kb/files_not_syncing. I HAVE TRIED TO GO THROUGH THESE STEPS (updated description or pictures needed as instructions leave gaps in steps).

    Questions:
    1) How many items to I need to delete to get access to ALL of my papers?
    2) Will I regain access to ALL of my papers once I get my storage down to a specific level?
    3) If I upgrade, will I get full access to ALL of my papers?
    4) Advice given for "attached files that cannot be found" is not clear (as seen on: https://www.zotero.org/support/kb/files_not_syncing). As one example, I can't find the "preferences" button you advise via step 5: "Sync→Reset pane of the Zotero preferences on Computer A and select Reset File Sync History."
    5) Will you please add screenshots for the advice offered for "attached files that cannot be found"? See: https://www.zotero.org/support/kb/files_not_syncing

    Please note that I only have one computer (no "computer B" in your scenario provided in https://www.zotero.org/support/kb/files_not_syncing).



    Thank you!

    Stephanie





  • edited March 19, 2020
    This sounds like a misunderstanding.
    Please note that I only have one computer (no "computer B" in your scenario
    You certainly have — or had — more than one computer, since you began this thread by referring to a "new computer", suggesting that you had an old computer where you presumably added many of these files. Since you're at your file sync quota, some number of files you added elsewhere likely never synced with the online library.

    If you follow the Files Not Syncing page carefully, you'll see that it walks you through how to determine where the problem is, and in this case, you'll almost certainly find that the files can't be accessed online, meaning that the files were never synced from the computer where they were originally created. To gain access to the files on this computer, you would need to add a storage subscription and then sync the computer where you originally added the files so that they upload to the online library. Just adding a subscription now wouldn't do anything, since the files were never uploaded to begin with.
    I can't find the "preferences" button you advise via step 5: "Sync→Reset pane of the Zotero preferences
    Like any Mac app, you access the preferences through the application menu (the "Zotero" menu). But if the files don't exist online, there's no reason to do this on a computer where you can't access the files.
  • Thanks. There has only been one physical computer. The problem is that it crashed and I had to get a new OS. Can you tell me if that changes your answer above?
  • A reminder that I used to have access to all of the readings I added to Zotero. Just trying to get access back. What do I need to do?

    Thanks again.
  • edited 18 days ago
    There has only been one physical computer. The problem is that it crashed and I had to get a new OS. Can you tell me if that changes your answer above?
    No, that makes no difference. The point is just that you had your Zotero data directory on the computer before — that's "Computer A". Then you wiped your computer or otherwise lost all your data and reinstalled Zotero — that's now "Computer B". So if the files aren't accessible online, they never synced from Computer A, presumably because you were at your file sync quota. The only way to get them back would be to restore from a backup you made of Computer A.
  • The problem is that it crashed and I had to get a new OS. Can you tell me if that changes your answer above?
    Likely not. If the new OS was put on there without preserving previously existing files, those are gone. If there was a back-up of your old HD content, see https://www.zotero.org/support/zotero_data on where to look. You may want to consult whoever worked with you on getting the new OS on your computer.
    A reminder that I used to have access to all of the readings I added to Zotero. Just trying to get access back. What do I need to do?
    You really seem to be misunderstanding this. Zotero stores files locally. That's how/why you were able to access them. You did something that, from the sounds of it, deleted or at least moved the local file system. So best case, the files are somewhere else and you need to look for them (likely with the help of someone that understand what exactly was done in the process of giving you a new OS). Worst case, the files were deleted as part of the process.

    As dstillman says, it's almost certainly the case that the files were never on the Zotero server so you can't get them back from there.
  • edited 18 days ago
    "You really seem to be misunderstanding this."
    ^^^
    Right! This is why I need your expertise! I wonder if you might use more inviting language in the future for folks who don't know as much as you ;)
  • This wasn't intended as uninviting, sorry, but it really is crucial for you to understand how/where Zotero stores data and also to be clear about where misunderstandings are in order to resolve this. It's not like I stopped right there -- I gave you a detailed description of how things work.

    People here want to help you and we write quickly; it's much easier to read post
    charitably and under that assumption.

    That works in both directions; e.g. I didn't assume that the fact that you wrote "a reminder" was meant to imply we can't read/remember something you already mentioned but instead took it as an attempt to clarify and avoid, yes, misunderstandings. I'd ask for similar charity in reading on your part.
Sign In or Register to comment.